Student shines spotlight on organ donation, honors late brother at imaginative school event

ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. — A suburban middle school student is honoring his older brother’s memory by raising awareness for organ donation in an imaginative way.

Taylor Petrillo, 14, is a student at South Middle School in Arlington Heights. He organized a “green out” and a school assembly with hundreds of students Tuesday.

The Jesse White Tumblers were on hand to entertain and put the focus on organ donation, Taylor’s new calling since the death of his brother Matthew.

“He is the best that anybody could ever ask for,” Taylor said. “He passed away in September and he was an organ donor and he saved four people.”

Those four people received lifesaving organs from Matthew, who died at the age of 27.

Taylor wanted “Green Out Day” at his school for the last few months and an assembly to teach his classmates the lesson he learned from his big brother. To give.

“He’s a prime example of what the future holds,” Director of Illinois Organ Donor Program Connie Boatman said. “When you’re talking about young advocates and how they champion for causes.. they’re very powerful, they have voices, it matters to them and they make a difference.”

“It’s says that our future is bright,” Secretary of State Jessie White said. “That these young people have a giving spirit to make a commitment to make this world a better place to live.”

Taylor said his mission is to give back and honor Matthew.

“He gave so many people another chance so they can still do all the things they love and be with their family everyday.”

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